People talk a lot about the keys to wealth. Yet somehow, they forget something we have to find in ourselves.
Every week, I determine two primary goals for my spare time. This week, my goals are
(1) restructure our personal finance files and paperwork and
(2) write about my personal expectations for life in a journal every day.
I find that one of my goals is satisfied for the week, I cross it off. I find great satisfaction in drawing that bold line. And I challenge you to do similar projects.
What’s this list stuff got to do with money?
Lining up your finance files this week will put your current financial situation in perspective. You know exactly where to find items for banks, stock trades, mutual fund purchases. You can see how much risk you’re comfortable taking and a rough sketch of your financial obligations, assets, and needs.
Second, what’s the point of pinching pennies and spending every spare minute on accumulation of wealth if you don’t have a plan for this money in the future? Take time every day this week to reflect on your direction. Ask yourself these questions:
1. In twenty years, I see myself spending my evenings with whom, doing what?
Imagine your ideal town, beautiful house, and hobbies. Do you have kids? How are you all dressed? What are you eating? Here’s your chance to day dream about your happily ever after.
2. In twenty years, how do I want to spend the hours of 9 to 5?
You basically have three options: work for someone else, work for yourself, or not really work much at all. What do you pick? Why did you pick this choice?
3. Do I want a specific amount of money? When will I be satisfied with my amount of wealth?
Are you shooting for a specific dollar sign in the bank? The feeling of a specific lifestyle?
4. What do I want so much money for?
You probably want a specific lifestyle, but what else? Do you want to give money, give time? Do you want specific things? Why are you equating the value of money to the value of your future dreams?
5. Who do I want so much money for?
Do you want your spouse or kids to have a certain lifestyle? Are you hoping to give them specific opportunities that you had or never had? When you’re working with someone else in mind, you can find yourself much more eager to go the extra mile when all you want to do is quit. (Know any new fathers who hate their jobs? They go every day for that wife and baby, no question, no hesitation.)
6. What’s one idea I have for increasing my net worth in a way that can grow without my constant supervision?
This question requires an absolute, which makes it the hardest question to ask yourself. But ask yourself this one every day. After a while, you start to see opportunity where you never did before. You’ll be like Walt Disney, seeing the potential in full-length films and cartoons, discovering the significance of a destination family vacation like Disney Land, then spotting the rapid love affair with televisions and tapping into the channels with shows like the Mickey Mouse Club.
7. Finally, what can I do better tomorrow to reach these goals that I learned from today?